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Let’s all stare at this gorgeous Z8 Alpina Roadster
Rare design icon is coming up for auction. Now gawp at these pics of it
Alpina’s take on the BMW Z8 is called the Alpina V8 Roadster. Only 555 were reportedly built, and this rather delectable 2003-registered black und red version is being offered up for auction at RM Sotheby’s Monterey sale in August.
We would now like to give you a moment so that you may scroll through the pictures at the top of this story. Because it’s gorgeous. Go on. We’ll wait.
Ready to continue? Good. The Z8 remains the BMW roadster that most closely embodies the spirit of the classic 507. Indeed, the concept Z8 was even dubbed ‘Z07’. It arrived in Y2K with a 5.0-litre V8 up front pinched from the E39 M5, good for 400bhp, matched to a six-speed manual and rear-wheel-drive.
Acceleration was rapid enough: 0-62mph took 4.7s and it’d top out at 155mph (limited). According to something we read on the Internet, BMW stockpiled enough parts for the Z8 to last 50 years, pointing to the car’s inherent collectability and desirability. We also read somewhere else on the Internet that driving your precious Ferrari 250 GT in reverse winds back the odometer. Or maybe that was a movie. Whatever. (In any case, this Alpina V8’s only covered 738 miles since new.)
Anyway, the Z8 was born and it was – mostly – lovely. Step forward Alpina, a tuner close to Top Gear’s heart, who decided to modify it according to its own philosophy. The 5.0-litre M5 V8 was swapped out for Alpina’s 4.8-litre B10 V8, producing a mite less power at 375bhp, tuned for more torque at lower revs. 0-60mph now took 5s, though top speed rose to 161mph.
The manual box was binned in favour of a five-speed auto. The suspension too, tweaked to give a softer ride, and Alpina did the honourable thing by ditching BMW’s run-flat tyres for ones with taller sidewalls, sitting on bigger 20in alloys. Alpina alloys. Nice alloys.
There were a few interior accoutrements too, and the finished item is what you see above.
There’s no reserve on this one, but Z8s are becoming increasingly expensive on the auction circuit. So, y’know, sell everything.